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Lonicerus [Lonitzer], Adam

1. Dates
Born: Marburg, 10 Oct 1528
Died: Frankfurt, 29 May 1586
Dateinfo: Dates Certain
Lifespan: 58
2. Father
Occupation: Academic
His father, Johann Lonitzer (1497-1569), was a philologist and professor at the University of Marburg (he has his own entry in the Allgemeine deutsche Biographie, 19, 158-63).
No information on financial status.
3. Nationality
Birth: Marburg, Germany
Career: Frankfurt, Germany
Death: Frankfurt, Germany
4. Education
Schooling: Marburg, M.A., M.D.; Mainz
1536, University of Marburg, received a B.A. (1540), and M.A. (1545).
He studied medicine at Marburg and at Mainz. He received his M.D. in 1554 from Marburg.
5. Religion
Affiliation: Lutheran
6. Scientific Disciplines
Primary: Botany, Natural History, Medicine
Subordinate: Mathematics
7. Means of Support
Primary: Publishing, Government, Medicine
Secondary: Schoolmastering, Academia
1545-1546, began teaching at the Gymnasium in Frankfurt, but returned to Marburg because of disturbances caused by war.
While a student in Mainz, he was a private tutor in the home of Dr. Wilhelm Osterod, professor of medicine at Mainz.
1553, professor of mathematics, University of Marburg.
1554-1586, appointed municipal physician in Frankfurt, at a salary of 40 gulden. He also worked as a proofreader in the printing shop owned by his father-in-law, who specialized in reviving old herbals. After the death of Egenolf, Lonicerus inherited a share of the business, one of the most prosperous in Germany, and ran it with his brothers-in-law.
8. Patronage
Types: City Magistrate, Aristrocrat
He supposedly received a call to the University of Mainz, which was presumably the work of his patrons, the medical professors Osterrod (see above) and Waehinger. Since nothing came of this, I am not listing it.
1554, he married the daughter of Frankfurt printer Christian Egenolph (d. 1533). He then inherited a share of this substantial business.
Upon marrying Magdalena Egenolf, he became a citizen of Frankfurt. He dedicated the second part of his natural history (1555) to the city, and received a 10 taler honorarium. He also dedicated a 1573 book to the city.
Count Philipp of Nassua was the godfather of Lonicerus's first son. Lonicerus later dedicated his Kraeuterbuch (1557) to the count.
9. Technological Involvement
Type: Medical Practice
As well as acting as municipal physician, he wrote books on public health, such as regulations for controlling the plague (with Johann Palmerius, 1572) and regulations for midwives (1573).
10. Scientific Societies
Memberships: None
  1. Karl Maegdefrau, Neue deutsche Biographie, 15, 147b-8b.
  2. W. Sticker, Allgemeine deutsche Biographie, 19, 155-6.
  3. F.W.E. Roth, "Botaniker Eucharius Roesslin, Theod. Dorsten, u. Adam Lonicer (1526-1586)," Zentralblatt fuer Bibliothekswesen, 19 (1902), 277-86. [Z671.Z5 v. 19]
Not Available and Not Consulted
  1. F.A. Andersen, An Illustrated History of Herbals (1977), 156- 62.
Compiled by:
Richard S. Westfall
Department of History and Philosophy of Science
Indiana University

Note: the creators of the Galileo Project and this catalogue cannot answer email on geneological questions.

1995 Al Van Helden
Last updated
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